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Feds will seek Loughner trial in Arizona

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Tx4obama Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 05:14 PM
Original message
Feds will seek Loughner trial in Arizona
Edited on Mon Jan-17-11 05:18 PM by Tx4obama
Source: Politico

Federal prosecutors intend to move forward with the case against Tucson shooting suspect Jared Lee Loughner in Arizona, a Justice Department spokesman said Monday, knocking down a report in the Washington Post that suggested prosecutors were planning to take the case to San Diego to avoid the emotion stirred up in Arizona by the apparent assassination attempt on Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.)

"The Department plans to bring the case in Arizona and will oppose any change of venue motions," Justice Department Director of Public Affairs Matt Miller said Monday.

The Post report, which went up on the newspaper's website late Sunday said "federal authorities" were planning to move the case to San Diego "within several weeks" and quoted a federal law enforcement official saying such a move was inevitable. It did not explicitly say that prosecutors were intending to take the case out of state, but other reports which picked up the Post account took it that way.

The Justice Department statement did not rule out federal support for a change of venue within the state, such as moving the trial from Tucson to Phoenix. All of Arizona sits within a single federal judicial district.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/blogs/joshgerstein/0111/Feds_will_seek_Loughner_trial_in_Arizona.html



Note: Bolding is mine for emphasis.
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boston bean Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 05:16 PM
Response to Original message
1. good
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Heywood J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 06:11 PM
Response to Original message
2. It's going to be pretty hard to find people in Arizona who
haven't read or heard about that shooting, seen his mugshot, or heard some talking head blabbing on about it. For that matter, it'll be pretty hard to find someone just about anywhere these days.
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Arrowhead2k1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 06:25 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. You'd be surprised.
On the contrary, there's no shortage of people with their heads up their asses in this country.
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Kali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:49 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. they don't have to look for jurors who haven't heard anything
they look for people who can listen and make decisions based on evidence presented in court

they look (ideally) for people who haven't formed an opinion, not for people that have never heard of the case (and of course defense and prosecution don't have objections to bias towards their respective goals either)
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Heywood J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 09:17 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. Ordinarily, I'd agree with you.
That's quite true in most cases, for charges other than mass murder. In this case, having heard about it pretty much means having formed an opinion, especially given all the stories about what a whackjob he appears to be and that every story portrays his guilt unquestioningly.
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happyslug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 06:42 PM
Response to Original message
4. Oh. They decided to follow the US Constitution?
Edited on Mon Jan-17-11 07:07 PM by happyslug
Article III, Section 2, Third paragraph:

The Trial of all Crimes, except in Cases of Impeachment, shall be by Jury; and such Trial shall be held in the State where the said Crimes shall have been committed; but when not committed within any State, the Trial shall be at such Place or Places as the Congress may by Law have directed.

http://www.usconstitution.net/const.html#A3Sec2

Unless the Defendant did something in San Diego, related to this attack, the trial has to be held in Tuscon. The Classic case was in the late 1960s or early 1970s, IRA arms smugglers operated out of Boston to smuggle guns into Northern Ireland. Of the several Transactions (Eight if I remember right) only one had anything to do outside of Massachusetts, and that was a phone call to Dallas Texas. The Federal Government took that one incident and decided to hold the trial in Dallas, for the simple reason Massachusetts was known to be pro-IRA and thus more likely to get a guilty verdict. The only reason the Federal Government could move the case was because of that one phone call involving the smuggling from Dallas to Boston and then only to Dallas, for it was the only city, outside of Massachusetts that had anything to do with the underlying crime.

My point is the Feds need SOMETHING to move this case outside of Tuscon and right now they have nothing.

As to the Defendant he can ask for such a transfer and it be granted if the Judge finds Tuscon to prejudice against him to get a fair trial. The problem is the Feds (and the state when they are in a similar situation) can NOT make such a move without the Defendant's permission. This came up in the Civil Rights era, Murders of Civil Rights Workers would NEVER agree to any move outside their home areas, thus you would end up with a jury full of Klansmen deciding if a Klansmen was guilty of killing a African American. The rule has its good side and bad side, but it is a very old rule and set forth in the US Constitution itself not the Bill of Rights (The Bill of Rights was added AFTERWARD, thus this has been the law since 1789 NOT 1792 when the Bill of Rights was passed).
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